International pressure on parties to the conflict in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region is building, but abuses of civilians and aid blockages and looting continue. The United States and the EU have continued to pause some non-emergency aid to Ethiopia. The UK government should consider pursuing UN sanctions against individuals “found to be obstructing the delivery of essential humanitarian supplies and using starvation as a weapon of war,” according to a parliamentary committee. The Eritrean military remains in Tigray, and is accused of looting and abuses despite a pledge by Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed a month ago that its forces would pull back. The AFP news agency obtained documents from Tigray’s Abiy-appointed interim government describing harassment of aid workers and looting of supplies by Eritrean troops. Meanwhile, AP reported the rounding up and detention of thousands of Tigrayans, amounting to a purge of the military and civil service on grounds of ethnicity. The UN says 90% of displaced people have still not received help with shelter, and a major road into the region was blocked by hostilities for 12 days.
From The New Humanitarian, April 30. Used with permission.
See our last post on the Tigray conflict.
Ethiopia: soldiers convicted of rape, killing
In a statement released May 21 by the office of the Attorney General, the Ethiopian government confirmed that three of its soldiers have been convicted and sentenced for rape and one for killing a civilian in connection with the conflict in Tigray region. (Jurist)
Air-strike in Ethiopia’s Tigray kills more than 50: witnesses
An air-strike hit a busy market in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray village of Togoga on June 22 and killed at least 51 people, according to health workers who said soldiers blocked medical teams from traveling to the scene. (AP)
Ethiopia: federal forces retreat, rebels enter Tigray capital
In a major turn in Ethiopia’s eight-month civil war in the northern Tigray region, Tigrayan fighters began entering the regional capital June 28 after federal government troops retreated from the city. The Tigray Defense Forces have spent months regrouping and recruiting new fighters since the Ethiopian military occupied Tigray region last November, and in the past week began a counterattack back toward the capital, Mekelle. New York Times journalists in Mekelle saw thousands of residents take to the streets, waving flags and shooting off fireworks after hearing that Tigrayan forces had advanced to the city.